UFT Home Page


This is the official UFT / Internet SENDFILE page. You will find sources to several implementations and sparse documentation here.

UFT has its roots in the efforts of two guys from Texas A&M University trying to exchange binary files across unlike systems. FTP was not yet available, and later proved to carry more administrative hassles than desired. They wanted to send the files, not put them. (Otherwise, there's nothing at all wrong with FTP.)

UFT focuses on data canonicalization. (Indeed, that term is probably overused in the documentation.) A handful of fundamental types are defined, starting with just TEXT and BINARY.

The acronym expands to Universal File Transmission. Originally, it meant Unsolicited File Transfer, because unlike for the web or FTP, the user doesn't "get" or "put" the files; they are "sent" and then "received". It's a little like e-mail, but more akin to parcel ground service than to paper correspondence. UFT is designed to do over TCP what IBM's NJE protocol does over point-to-point channels.

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UFT provides the same file sending capability as is enjoyed on BITNET, a large academic computer network popular in the 1980s. Because it is one of many IP services, you can get that function with no loss. Using UFT does not prohibit use of other mechanisms.

UFT can be proxied, but the design does not require store and forward as NJE and other protocols do.